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Harriet Tubman Just Not Nazi Enough For Trump To Honor On Our Money

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We were all very excited at the prospect of American hero Harriet Tubman replacing genocidal asshole Andrew Jackson on the $20. The Obama administration had planned to unveil the Tubman Twenties in 2020. That's also the 100th anniversary of (white) women's suffrage. Unfortunately, it looks like we'll have to wait a while for racist-free twenties. Treasury Secretary Stephen Mnuchin let it drop yesterday that any changes won't happen until at least 2026, maybe even as late as 2028. Why? Mnuchin told the House Financial Services Committee that it's all about security (of white feelings).

MNUCHIN: The primary reason we have looked at redesigning the currency is for counterfeiting issues. Based upon this, the $20 bill will now not come out until 2028. The $10 bill and the $50 bill will come out with new features beforehand.

That's an interesting whitewash. The primary and certainly best reason for the change is because Jackson was a monster whom we should no longer voluntarily honor in any way. It's why we threw out our copy of Leonard Part 6 on VHS. Laura Ingraham might claim this makes us the Taliban, but she's a hatemonger known for hyperbole. Jackson will still appear in history books. We'll still learn about the Indian Removal Act and its resulting horrors. We just won't put his ugly mug on the money descendants of people he despised and abused have to use every day when they buy toothpaste. There are so many white men on our currency, we can afford to exclude the really big assholes. White folks still have Lincoln and the guy Lin-Manuel Miranda played on Broadway.


Rep. Ayanna Pressley didn't fall for Mnuchin's spin. She reminded the Treasury secretary that putting Tubman on the $20 was part of an "exhaustive community process." The goal was to honor a prominent women from history on US currency. Tubman was an obvious choice because she's an objective badass. She repeatedly risked her life to help black people escape slavery, which cost white people a lot of dead presidents. There is poetic irony in Tubman on the $20 because America's prioritization of money over humanity is why slavery persisted for so long. Tubman was also a war hero, and we know how Donald Trump feels about them.

During Mnuchin's testimony, Pressley backed the Treasury secretary into multiple corners and slapped him around for a while. Once again, this must be viewed for full appreciation of her unleashed awesomeness.

PRESSLEY: The occupant of the White House, Donald Trump, said that the move to put Harriet Tubman on the $20 bill was "pure political correctness." He in fact suggested putting her on a $2 bill. So do you agree that nearly a year of collecting response from across the country can be simply reduced to "political correctness"?

Munch tried to dodge this question, but Pressley "reclaimed her time" all over his face.

PRESSLEY: Does that mean you have no intention of executing the redesign as planned by your predecessor?

MNUCHIN: That is correct. I've made no decision to execute on a redesign.

Mnuchin insists he's focused solely on "security," which is an especially facile excuse. The $20 is the most counterfeited bill within the US. If security were actually a priority, he wouldn't delay an update. The revised timeline is also not an accident. Senior Treasury Department officials claim Mnuchin wants to postpone a redesign until Trump is out of office. Mnuchin is apparently afraid the president might cancel the new $20 completely out of his usual racist spite. Trump is a big fan of Jackson because of course he is. Jackson didn't just hate Indians and black people like your Fox-viewing grandpa. He was also a big fat crook who introduced the "spoils system" to American politics. That's where the president fills key government positions with sycophantic toadies and partisan hacks regardless of merit or competence. Maybe Donald Trump is Andrew Jackson only with bone spurs.

New Hampshire Senator Jeanne Shaheen, who'd recently introduced the Harriet Tubman Tribute Act, said there was "no excuse" for the Trump administration's failure to prioritize the $20's redesign.

SHAHEEN: Sadly, this delay sends an unmistakable message to women and girls, and communities of color, who were promised they'd see Harriet Tubman on the $20 bill.

Trump has been sending racist and sexist messages fairly non-stop since his election. It's not a surprise that a president who praises Robert E. Lee would not want to honor a true American hero during his less than distinguished tenure.

[ NYTimes ]

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Stephen Robinson

Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Seattle. However, he's more reliable for food and drink recommendations in Portland, where he spends a lot of time for theatre work. His co-adaptation of "Jitterbug Perfume" by Tom Robbins is playing NOW at Pioneer Square's Cafe Nordo. All Wonketters welcome.

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DHS photo (Every damn ICE pic looks like this)

Donald Trump's immigration goon squads were all set to start mass arrests and deportations of families in multiple cities Sunday, but before the raids started, he tweeted Saturday that he'd decided to delay the operation by two weeks -- to allow Democrats a chance to join Republicans in trashing US asylum law. Trump took a phone call Friday evening from Nancy Pelosi urging him to hold off on the raids, although it's also possible that internal disagreements about the operation at the Department of Homeland Security may have been part of the reason for the delay, too. In the meantime, Trump gets to terrify undocumented families some more and rant about deporting "millions," although the planned operation was actually targeted only at a couple thousand people who have already received deportation orders.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement had been gearing up to start raids in 10 US cities, including Los Angeles, Chicago, Miami, and Baltimore, to show how tough America is, and never mind that the sweeps would certainly have led to more family separations, as ICE scooped up at least some undocumented parents of children born in the US. The news also comes while the media is reporting filthy, inhuman conditions at the border camps where newly arrested immigrants, including babies, are being packed in, leading to plenty of awkward questions about why the government suddenly wants to arrest more people in the interior of the country? (Hint: President Eichmann just announced his reelection bid.)

The Great Deporter announced the delay of the operation Saturday by Twitter, as if that were normal, then followed up with more bluster Sunday.

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Kamala Harris was holding it down at the South Carolina Democratic Convention this weekend, and she wasn't just there to kick it at Clyburn's Fish Fry, hang out with Berndog Sanders, and just look extra good. No. She fucking running for President, and she's actually got a chance, unlike the many Mayo Casserole Men who keep jumping into the damn race. Why did they jump in after Kamala and Elizabeth Warren, the only people who are even running, clearly said, "We got it from here, boys"? Not sure, but regardless, it was unnecessary. Doesn't matter anyway because who is gonna remember Dadface McDorksky when Kamala is turning it the fuck out with speeches indicting Trump?

Do you believe in America? Kamala Harris believes in America, and her Saturday speech calls out for justice, and righteousness; where Barack Obama struck hopeful, dulcet, aspirational tones, Harris strikes sharp chords of urgency. To say that she read Trump the riot act would be, and is, an understatement; what she did here raised a crucial reality that some Dems refuse to see. Trump MUST be prosecuted. The Democratic nominee will wear many hats, and one of the most important of those hats is that of a prosecutor. There is a case to be made against Donald J. Trump, hell, there are so many cases, and as far as Harris is concerned, who better to make that case, but a COP? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Kamala Harris at the South Carolina Democratic Convention June, 22 2019 youtu.be

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